So here we are in our third month of sheltering in place. Many of us have been working at home, homeschooling children, and only going out when absolutely necessary. It’s hard to know when we’ll return to any degree of normalcy, in these unprecedented times. (Anyone else about to lose it if you hear that phrase one more time?)
So until we can make our glorious return to precedented times, we mostly have to keep ourselves entertained at home. So here’s another edition of Parked at Home. This month we’ll cover at-home and virtual car-themed activities.
Let’s start with old school…
Puzzle makers have seen an unexpected spike in sales as many families search for new ways to stay occupied during weeks upon weeks of staying at home. We’re not going to suggest puzzles, but there are some pretty interesting car-themed board games that might be worth checking out.
You may have heard of ‘Kanban’ as an efficient workflow principle, and where it’s most directly applied is in assembly lines. So it is in Kanban: Driver’s Edition, in which you’re an ambitious manager trying to edge out your peers. And if you’re interested in electric vehicles, check out Kanban EV—same premise except you can pretend to work in a Tesla factory. (Elon Musk not included.)
On the more performance-focused side of things, Formula D will appeal most to those interested in the actual mechanics and techniques of racing. A roll of the dice determines the shifting of gears, but realistic considerations and strategic decisions come into play with regard to things like which gear you’re entering a corner in, and downshifting to avoid car damage. Amazon calls it “Easy to learn, but challenging to master.” As it should be.
Lego Technic kits
Puzzles are apparently seeing their biggest rise in popularity since… ever. But we can do better than puzzles! Check out the Lego Technic sets. These are some of the most intricate, realistic, and challenging Lego projects produced. They’re not cheap, but they can be a satisfying individual or group project—and when you’re done you’ll have a finished product worth displaying (that even has some articulating parts, like gearboxes and steering.) It’s the petrolhead’s version of a ship in a bottle.
Feel like a little culture?
If you want to take a walk through some hallowed automotive halls, the Petersen Automotive Museum is one of those holy grail destinations for car lovers—included in its collection are famous movie cars like the Batmobile, the Back to the Future DeLorean, and the Goldfinger Aston Martin, as well as the rarest of the rare spanning automotive history.
The museum itself is in Los Angeles, but right now you can check out all sorts of virtual experiences, live streams and a 60-minute tour of the Vault, which has over 250 iconic and/or rare cars, trucks, and motorcycles.
Cars & Coffee online (the next one will be June 7.) This is available to global car owners, and you can participate by submitting a video of your car—with narration if there’s an interesting story to tell— or just spectate. We’re looking forward to seeing all of the cars and hearing the tales! In the meantime, you can check out the Petersen’s First Ever Global Cars And Coffee, held this month, on YouTube.
Fun fact: Rosso Scuderia became the signature color of the Maranello-made machines because back in the early days of racing that was the color the International Automobile Federation assigned to Italian Grand Prix race cars. (Lamborghini didn’t start making cars until about 16 years later, which probably explains why they aren’t synonymous with rosso.)
Really just miss traveling?
You can go for a drive—in San Francisco, Amsterdam, Rio, Barcelona, Oslo, New York, Paris… or a whole bunch of other scenic and noteworthy cities. A new, free, very literally named web app called Drive & Listen lets you—you guessed it—go on a drive (or more accurately, ride along) and listen to the sounds of the city, as well as local radio if you’d like. It’s a simple concept, but with a little imagination you can almost believe you’re on vacation, in an Uber… back in good ol’ precedented times.